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Recovery Elevator 🌴

It isn't a NO to alcohol, but a YES to a better life! Best selling author Paul Churchill, along with Kristopher Oyen interview people who have stepped away from alcohol in their own lives. Each week this podcast does a deep dive into an exploration of what a booze free life might look like from various perspectives and opinions.  If you are sick and tired of alcohol making you sick and tired, we invite you to listen to Recovery Elevator. Check out what an alcohol free life can look like as others share their own stories of sobriety. If you are sober curious, newly sober, supporting a loved one or living your best life already in recovery, then you are in the right place. This podcast addresses what to do if you’re addicted to alcohol, or if you think you’re an alcoholic. Other topics include, does moderate drinking work, does addiction serve a purpose, what happens to the brain when we quit drinking, should you track sobriety time, is A.A. right for you, spirituality, and more. Similar to other recovery podcasts like This Naked Mind, the Shair Podcast, and the Recovered Podcast, Paul and Kris discuss a topic and then interview someone who has ditched the booze.
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Now displaying: April, 2023
Apr 24, 2023

Episode 427 – But a Symptom

 

Today we have Ian, he is 24, from Baltimore, MD and he has been alcohol free since December 26, 2022.

 

What are you doing for Memorial Day?  You should join Recovery Elevator in Atlanta! We have an event for Café RE members on Saturday and then Sunday night we have a conference style event that everyone is invited to attend. Information about the Sunday night event can be found here. Café RE members can get more information through the members website if they are interested in the weekend event.

 

Exact Nature: https://exactnature.com/RE20

 

[02:15] Thoughts from Paul:

 

If alcohol isn’t the primary problem, and it’s a symptom of something else, what does that mean, and what course of action do we take? None of us are able to correct the unrest in our lives when alcohol is present. That’s why moderate drinking for the problematic drinker doesn’t work either.

 

For Paul, after he ditched the booze, he recognized that his nervous system needed healing and found that nature was a great help with addressing that. Everyone is different and their sources of unrest that need addressing will be different but first, the alcohol needs to go and then the healing can begin. We get one life, and your addiction is about to springboard you towards your authentic self – if you are willing. You may be asking yourself “am I willing?”…If you are listening to this podcast, the answer is yes.

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month. #sponsored

 

[10:47] Paul introduces Ian:

 

Ian took his last drink on Christmas Day of 2022. He lives in Baltimore and is a recent college grad. In his free time, he fosters senior dogs and plays music. He finds taking care of animals at the end of their lives to be very rewarding and helpful in his recovery.

 

Ian wasn’t exposed to alcohol until he was in college. He was in his junior year when he started drinking and smoking pot. He had roommates that were drinking like he was at parties and on the weekends, but Ian was starting to be sneaky and would purchase his own alcohol separate from the alcohol that was present in the house and didn’t want anyone to know how much he was actually drinking. The blackouts started becoming more and more frequent.

 

When he was 20, he started planning his entire days around drinking and smoking. Work and school became minor activities and drinking was priority. Throughout all of this Ian was still successful so he didn’t see his drinking as a problem.

 

Early 2020 Ian experienced withdrawal for the first time and it scared him. He initially didn’t realize what it was and was scared he was going to die. For the first time, he acknowledged his drinking had become an issue.

 

After several trips to the ER, he ended up speaking with a peer counselor who helped him get involved with an Intensive Outpatient Program. Ian was able to get sober for two months but was ashamed of what he was doing and ended up leaving. He relapsed and had a bad Christmas with his family. He has learned that it is more embarrassing to have a drinking problem than it is to work on getting sober.

 

Ian says being transparent with people was the game changer for him. Letting everyone know that he is sober helps him stay accountable.

 

Being a young person in sobriety can feel a little lonely Ian says. Our culture normalizes drinking in our twenties and it’s hard to connect with others in recovery because most people are older. In spite of the feelings of missing out or “why me” thinking, Ian knows that this is the right choice for him.

 

Ian is looking forward to achieving newfound career goals, being a better dog dad and someday having a family. He is excited to fully find his confidence and be the best version of himself he can possibly be.

 

Cafe RE  Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator

We took the elevator down; we have to take the stairs back up

I love you guys

And don’t forget that we definitely can do this

Apr 17, 2023

Episode 426 – It Gets Easier

 

Today we have Jeffrey, he is 35, from Monument, CO and he took his last drink on July 23, 2022.

 

Registration is open for our flagship annual retreat held in Bozeman, Montana, this upcoming August 9th – 13th.  This event is all about having fun, connecting, and learning the tools needed to be successful on your Alcohol-Free journey. You can find more information here!

 

[02:16] Thoughts from Paul:

 

Paul shares that he recently attended an AA meeting where a member celebrated 40 years of sobriety. One thing he took away from this is that it will naturally get easier the more time away from alcohol you have and the more life experience you get. It is also helpful to focus not on the destination, but the journey itself.

 

There is a YouTube channel that Paul watches where the host, Michael, showcases some of the most scenic railways in the world. Michael also shares similar views about the destination vs. the journey. Here is the link to one of his videos documenting the scenic Amtrak train route from Denver to Winter Park Ski Resort.

 

When we realize that hard days are a part of life, and that hard days are a part of an alcohol-free life, things get easier. With each conscious breath we take, things get easier. If you are struggling, on day one or day zero, Paul’s message to you is that this journey will get easier if we embrace it and we don’t do it alone.

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month. #sponsored

 

[09:38] Kris introduces Jeffrey:

 

Jeffrey is 35 from Monument, CO, he does apartment maintenance for a living, he is single and has one dog and two cats. For fun, he plays Magic the Gathering and is trying to get back into reading, specifically mental health and self-help type material.

 

Jeffrey was a loner growing up, but his sister’s social network became his as well. In high school, they would invite him to parties where there was lots of heavy drinking. It was a weekly event for him and his friends to scrape up money to have an older friend purchase 40’s for them to drink.

 

He went into the job corps program when he was 20. He wasn’t allowed to drink, and he went nearly a year without alcohol and didn’t really feel it was a loss. When he came back home from that he picked drinking back up and was drinking daily but didn’t feel it was excessive. Jeffrey was questioning his drinking and was able to quit again for another year but realizes now he didn’t have the recovery mindset, he was just doing it because he felt it was a spiritual issue.

 

At that point he felt he had had enough of a break and could allow himself to drink again. Aside from a few isolated negative events, Jeffrey was able to drink without much consequence for quite a while.

 

Jeffrey’s drinking started to escalate and saw him shifting from social drinking to eventually needing it in order to feel normal. He says that drinking was part of the culture at the hotel job that he had. Once he started a new career, he knew he needed to stop the daytime drinking. That lasted some time, but eventually the anxiety became out of control to where Jeffrey had to use alcohol to help him feel normal and function. After his family left him, he was really spiraling out.

 

One Saturday morning he woke up to some family members coming into his home. They had organized an intervention and had everything set up for him to be able to go to rehab. He agreed to just go and says it changed everything for him.

 

He committed to 30 days but stayed longer. Jeffrey feels that he gained a lot of skills for recovery and life through DBT and CBT treatment. The focus on core beliefs really helped him.

 

Since getting in recovery, he is healing his relationships and making friends. Jeffrey feels that living is possible for him now.

 

 

Cafe RE  Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator

The only way out is through

I love you guys

Apr 10, 2023

Episode 425 – What Recovery Pathway is Right for Me?

 

Today we have Doug. He is 59, from Buena Vista, CO and he took his last drink on July 28, 1982.

 

Join Recovery Elevator in Atlanta over Memorial Day weekend for a fun conference style meet up at the Marriott in Alpharetta.  This event is all about getting your connect on and it will be a fun time.  Spouses or loved ones are encouraged to attend the Sunday night event and Silent Disco afterwards!

 

[2:30] Thoughts from Paul:

 

When building your recovery portfolio, a good goal is 50% external and 50% internal. At first, the internal work may be too big of an ask, but as your nervous system settles down, you want to aim for a balanced split. Here are some quick examples of what I mean when I say external vs internal:

 

External:
Driving to an AA meeting, or hopping on a Café RE zoom chat
Phoning a sober friend
Working with a sponsor

 

Internal:
Meditation
Journaling
Reading Quit-Lit

 

When building out your recovery I recommend this 5-tiered approach:


1. Community – AA, SMART, Café RE, therapy, sober friends. Burn the Ships!


2. Action/Movement – Chemicals of wellbeing, endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin are released when we move.

 

3. Inner Peace – Meditation, breathwork, creative ventures, writing, time in nature.


4. Knowledge – Podcasts, Quit-Lit, learning about new things in and out of recovery.


5. Universe – This is not religion, but it is the spiritual component of recovery.

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month. #sponsored

 

 

 

 

 

[11:55] Paul introduces Doug:

 

Doug had his last drink on July 28th, 1982, when he was 19 years old. He lives in Buena Vista, CO and is married and they have two adult children. He has worked in upholstery, cabinet building and installations, and has built some houses with his son. He enjoys the mountains, biking and riding his motorcycle.

 

Doug grew up in a normal family and wasn’t exposed to heavy drinking. His first experience with alcohol was when he was 4 years old when he remembers having a few sips of his mother’s drink. He felt the warm glow and really liked it. Later when he was 12, a friend of his stole a bottle of liquor from his parents and while his friends were mixing it with soft drinks, Doug drank straight from the bottle. He felt something click – suddenly, he felt normal, and like everyone else.

 

When Doug was 16 his mother passed away and the drinking escalated and continued to be excessive after graduation. Some friends invited him to Alateen meetings, and he started attending weekly. Once a month AA members would come in and share their stories. He started identifying with some of the stories which got him to start question his drinking. He realized that he was becoming less like the person that he wanted to be.

 

When one of his former drinking friends disappeared from the meetings, he found out that they were working on sobriety with AA. That friend was a speaker at one of the meetings, and Doug noticed that they looked healthy and at peace. He chose to speak to him afterwards and expressed an interest in possibly attending AA but wasn’t quite ready for it.

 

Doug finally accepted the invitations to attend and was planning to go to a meeting on July 29th. The night before he found himself drinking and when he saw himself in a mirror started asking himself why he was drinking. He didn’t have a good answer for that.

 

AA has been a big tool for Doug, along with volunteer work. He knows that if he had continued drinking, he would not have had the life he has. He believes in counting blessings, finding things to be grateful for and putting sobriety before everything else.

 

Cafe RE  Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator

Go big, because eventually we all go home

I love you guys

Apr 3, 2023

Episode 424 – Caring for You

 

Today we have Abby. She is 49, from Phoenix, AZ, and took her last drink on 9/25/2020.

 

Join Recovery Elevator in Atlanta over Memorial Day weekend for a fun conference style event at the Marriott in Alpharetta. Spouses or loved ones are encouraged to attend the event on Sunday. Registration is open please click the link for more information.

 

We have registration for the annual Bozeman Retreat opening on April 3rd. The retreat is scheduled for August 9th – 13th. 

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month. #sponsored

 

[03:23] Thoughts from Kris:

 

In an effort to escape the long North Dakota winter, Kris and his wife took a short vacation to Dallas. They had a fantastic time enjoying the city and the company of friends. The key takeaways Kris had are the importance of self-care and connection.

He believes that most people are very resilient, and we tend to allow things to keep stacking things onto our plate to the point of overwhelm. That’s when we need to take time to slow down and take care of ourselves; how that looks is different for everyone.

 

[9:30] Kris introduces Abby:

 

Abby took her last drink on September 25, 2020.  She’s 49 and lives in Arizona. She’s single and has a young adult daughter who lives nearby. She is self employed doing online marketing for small businesses. She likes to cook, read and stay active.

 

She got drunk for the first time at a New Year’s Eve party when she was a young teen. She drank and smoked weed a lot through high school and college and feels fortunate that she never suffered any consequences throughout that time. At the time Abby thought drinking was just what people do in their teens and early twenties. In hindsight she knows it was numbing behavior. She never felt like she fit in, and alcohol helped her with her socializing.

 

After getting married to someone whose family had drug issues, she quit smoking but kept drinking. Her and her husband drank a lot together and chose wine because they thought it was more sophisticated. She didn’t drink during her pregnancy but started back soon after her daughter was born.

 

Shortly after having their child, she and her husband got divorced. Abby says her drinking ramped up and she started smoking again. She found herself drinking to deal with her emotions and continuing to get into unhealthy relationships. Abby feels like she drank a lot because of her insecurities and not feeling good enough or worthy of love.

 

Abby initially quit drinking as part of a quest to get healthy after some concerning medical test results, not with the intention of getting sober.  Her doctor had told her she needed to give up some foods, sugar and alcohol in order to heal. She quickly started feeling better so that helped her remain sober for nearly three months. Abby utilized her daughter as accountability which she feels helped a lot.

 

During a trip to Mexico on her birthday, she decided she was going to drink. She realized quickly that the way she drank was unhealthy. She had one last beer while out and it left her feeling awful for an entire weekend. She decided then that she was done.

 

When quitting she started on her own and didn’t feel like she needed any support. She started feeling like she needed connection so she joined Café RE during a Ditching the Booze course. She made a friend in that group and then started a hiking group locally. Abby has really enjoyed meeting other people in recovery at multiple meet ups. She is extremely open about the fact that she doesn’t drink and feels that helps her stay accountable.

 

Abby hosts a lot of chats in Café RE which she feel helps her give back to the community. She stays social with a lot of the friends that she has met there. She does enjoy NA beverages but says CONNECTION is key to her sobriety.

 

 

Cafe RE  Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

We’re the only ones that can do this, but we don’t have to do it alone.

I love you guys

 

 

 

 

 

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